Volume 10 Part 1 Article 59: Characteristics of the Mushroom Pathogen Verticillium Isolated from Four Continents and Its Tolerance to Benomyl

Volume 10 Part 1 Article 59
Year 1979
Title: Characteristics of the Mushroom Pathogen Verticillium Isolated from Four Continents and Its Tolerance to Benomyl
Authors: D.H. Lambert and P.J. Wuest

Abstract:

The first thorough description of Verticillium disease on commercial mushrooms was by Constantin and Dufour who, in 1892, referred to the disease as “la mole” (Gams, 1971) although this description included symptomology associated with another disease incited by Mycogone perniciosa. Forty-one years before this, however, Preuss described a fungus which he found associated with a field grown Agaric as Acrostalagonus fungicola (Gams, 1971). Other scientists studied either the pathogen or the disease, but in 1933 Ware described both the disease and the pathogen and ascribed the name Verticillium malthousei to the incitant (Ware, 1973). This description adhered to recognized rules of nomenclature but failed to consider the description and re-naming by Hassebrauk of V. fungicola (Preuss) Hassebr. (Hasselbrauk, 1936) which Gams considered when he included strains from mushrooms in this species (Gams, 1971).

Verticillium disease of Agaricus brunnescens Peck (syn : A. bisporus (Lange) Imbach) is the most serious fungal disease of this crop. Use of a dithicarbamate, zineb, to control this disease began about 1950 (Yoder et al., 1950), and more recently, Benlate, a benzimidazole, was introduced (Holmes et al., 1971). Benlate was so effective at controlling Verticillium disease immediately after its introduction that farmers thought this disease would fade into history. Unfortunately for the mushroom farmers, this dream failed to materialize since strains of the pathogen tolerant to Benlate appeared and often constituted a great portion of the total Verticillium fungicola population on a farm or in a geographical area, and zineb again was needed to control the disease.

The authors present information which characterizes some of the diversity of the pathogen, V. fungicola. In addition, benomyl tolerance is described and elucidated.

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